Google: 10,000 to tackle extremist online content

Logos of US technology company Google displayed on computer screens. (AFP)
Updated 06 December 2017
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Google: 10,000 to tackle extremist online content

LONDON: Google is set to create a team of 10,000 people who will be tasked with removing extremist, violent and predatory content posted on YouTube.
Susan Wojcicki, CEO of Google-owned YouTube said it would be expanding its team of moderators as she admitted that “bad actors” were “exploiting our openness to mislead, manipulate, harass or even harm.”
In recent weeks YouTube has been widely condemned for the availability of Daesh propaganda on the site and for videos featuring children in abuse situations.
Wojcicki said efforts to tackle extremism on the site had already seen ‘tremendous progress.”
“In the last year, we took actions to protect our community against violent or extremist content, testing new systems to combat emerging and evolving threats. We tightened our policies on what content can appear on our platform, or earn revenue for creators. We increased our enforcement teams,” the CEO wrote on her company blog.
Over the past six months, more than 150,000 videos of violent extremism have been removed, she added. The CEO said machine learning is helping human reviewers remove nearly five times as many videos than they were previously.
“Now, we are applying the lessons we’ve learned from our work fighting violent extremism content over the last year in order to tackle other problematic content. Our goal is to make it harder for policy-violating content to surface or remain on YouTube,” Wojcicki wrote.
YouTube has faced a backlash over the distribution and monetization of inappropriate content –something that Wojcicki acknowledged by saying that it had been “a difficult year.”
She said the company would now be taking a new approach to advertising, and would be “significantly ramping up” its team of advert reviewers to ensure adverts only run where they should.
 


Twitter makes it easier to switch between top and latest tweets

Twitter updates the way the timeline now works for iOS users. (Supplied)
Updated 18 December 2018
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Twitter makes it easier to switch between top and latest tweets

JEDDAH: Twitter announced Tuesday that it’s now giving users the ability to switch between tweets chosen by the app’s algorithm and the latest tweets from profiles users follow.
The update, which will be available this week, is only for iOS users and will allow for better conversations, the company says.
“Twitter sees people having more conversations and coming back to Twitter more often likely because they are finding Twitter more useful, informative, and fun. These are people who have turned off ‘Show the best Tweets first” previously’,” a statement said. The company released the algrothim driven trimeline in 2014 but provided a mechanism to disable it. With the changes the company will in the next few months remove the feature completely.
The move, to give the user a better choice of what tweets they see, will likely provide a better balance of relevant and timely content in users’ feeds.